By Megan Bianco
What began as a decent year for new movies, including Jeff Tremaine’s Jackass Forever and the Daniels’ Whatever, Everywhere, Simultaneously, ended on a disappointing note with the similarity A.G. Iñárritu’s Bardo and Damien Chazelle’s Babylon.
But, like most of the time, there are still plenty of current flicks to suggest and see, from indie dramas to character studies to scary films to criminal offense thrillers. Something I quickly saw this year was how many solid family films came out in 2022.
This is a genre that has left my radar for many years, but within the past 12 months, I concerned fall for Céline Sciamma’s Petite Maman and Charlotte Wells’ Aftersun, both about little girls (Joséphine Sanz and Frankie Corio) concerning terms with their distant parents (Nina Meurisse in Petite Maman and Paul Mescal in Aftersun).
The film community appears to be currently thinking about informing dysfunctional family tales through the eyes of the child instead of the developed, to a revitalizing welcome from viewers. In Addition To Dean Fleischer-Camp’s lovely Marcel the Shell with Shoes On for the animated output, we have some quality choices for grownups and older kids who delight in indies.
For more family stories that aren’t strictly concentrated on kids, Scott McGeHee and David Siegel’s Montana Story and Steven Spielberg’s The Fabelmans touch on more major topics such as affairs, divorce, death and abuse.
The Fabelmans has Spielberg’s typical whimsy and optimism through the retro, 1950s-1960s set drama starring Paul Dano and Michelle Williams, while Montana Story is more straightforward about 2 siblings (Owen Teague and Haley Lu Richardson) reconnecting after years apart. Both are executed successfully and do the most with modest productions.
Likewise on the smaller production scale, John Patton Ford’s Emily the Bad guy was a pleasant surprise for crime drama fans wishing to see a function through the eyes of a female (Aubrey Plaza) who gets involved with underground scams and scamming.
Another critical hit with a complicated female lead, Todd Field’s Tár, was not only the return of an acclaimed writer-director and Cate Blanchett’s newest praised efficiency, it used a new viewpoint on celebrities, opportunity and “cancel culture.”
If you were looking for some “back to essentials,” yet solid scary this year, there are Ti West’s X– a tribute to both 1970s slashers and porno origins– and Dan Trachtenberg’s Prey, a prequel to the popular Predator franchise.
Mia Goth and Amber Midthunder lead the smaller-scale creepy period pieces remarkably, with both films invigorating their genre and series, in Prey’s case.
And to conclude my top 10 of 2022, Graham Moore’s crime drama The Clothing was a fine example of how to shoot a “play on screen,” with only 2 or three rooms and about 5 stars. Mark Rylance and Johnny Flynn deliver per normal, while Dylan O’Brien and Zoey Deutch debut their efficient chemistry.
I’m not exactly sure if 2022 will go down as an outstanding year in cinema history, however it’s one that left me believing, “Eh, okay.”